The principle or practice of referring measures passed upon by the legislative body to the body of voters, or electorate, for approval or rejection, as in the Swiss cantons (except Freiburg) and in various local governments in the United States, and also in the local option laws, etc.; also, the right to so approve or reject laws, or the vote by which this is done. Referendum is distinguished from the mandate, or instruction of representatives by the people, from direct government by the people, in which they initiate and make the laws by direct action without representation, and from a plebiscite, or popular vote taken on any measure proposed by a person or body having the initiative but not constituting a representative or constituent body.
A diplomatic agent's note asking for instructions from his government concerning a particular matter or point.
The right to approve or reject by popular vote a meassure passed upon by a legislature.
It is difficult to understand these people who democratically take part in elections and a referendum, but are then incapable of democratically accepting the will of the people. Jose Saramago
2010 is not just a choice between Republicans and Democrats. 2010 is not just a choice between liberals and conservatives. 2010 is a referendum on the very identity of our nation. Marco Rubio
I don't believe an Alliance government should sponsor legislation on abortion or a referendum on abortion. Stephen Harper
We have a Conservative leader that believes in green taxes, that won't bring back grammar schools, that believes in continuing with total open-door migration from eastern Europe and refuses to give us a referendum on the EU. Nigel Farage
Maybe this will be the beginning of a trend? Flat taxes, cutting foreign aid, a referendum on Europe, grammar schools. Who knows? Nigel Farage